Fantasy NBA with Tom Carpenter
Welcome to SportsNation! On Tuesday morning, ESPN.com fantasy basketball expert Tom Carpenter will drop by to take your questions and analyze all the latest hoops news from the hardcourt. Carpenter writes the weekly "Grand Theft Roto" column.
Send your questions now and join Carpenter Tuesday at 11 a.m. ET!
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Tom Carpenter (11:00 AM)
Good morning everyone! Let's get right to the questions ...
Tom (Buffalo, NY)
whats up w/ k lowry? is he worth holding onto in daily scoring format championship week? or am i better off looking for spot starts in his place?
Tom Carpenter (11:04 AM)
Not sure whether his limited production is due simply to his lack of conditioning following his extended absence or whether it's just a matter of Dragic excelling and coach McHale sticking with him. Regardless, at this point in a daily scoring format, I wouldn't hesitate to drop him for someone who is playing well.
Do you think Klay Thompson is a Top 50 player next year?
Tom Carpenter (11:11 AM)
Assuming the Warriors' roster doesn't change drastically, he should be their primary scoring two guard for years to come. He's already proved quickly that he's a capable scorer at this level, averaging better than 48 FG% this month and in February (though a much smaller sample that month). If he can keep his FG% on the good side of 45 percent next season, he should fit right into the top 50. If coach Jackson leans on him with, say, 17-18 shots per game, he could be even more valuable.
Who do you see benefiting the most from Dwight Howard being out, Ryan Anderson or Glen Davis?
Tom Carpenter (11:13 AM)
Big Baby has clearly had the bigger boost, because he takes on Howard's role in the offense. Anderson may get more shots with Howard out, but he loses the inside-out dimension he enjoys with D-Ho. Right now, though Davis is hurting, so it may be moot.
What young players do you think are elite fantasy guys next year?
Tom Carpenter (11:17 AM)
I'll be keeping a close eye on Harden (does he start?), Lawson (does Andre get out of his way?) and DeMarcus Cousins (can he stay focused all season and improve his percentages?) as next season approaches. Each has top-10 upside, but they'll have to earn more touches to join the elite.
Where do you see Rubio being drafted next year? Top 25?
Tom Carpenter (11:21 AM)
Based on averages, he's 44th on the Player Rater this season. A natural progression might be top 25, if he were healthy. An ACL tear for a guy whose game is built on blowing by defenders with his quickness and speed is going to be a significant obstacle to overcome. Toss in the fact that he can't score (10.6 ppg on 35.7 FG%), and he honestly sounds like a guy to avoid on Draft Day. Unless Rubio appears to be near full speed during the preseason, I wouldn't draft him until the latter rounds, because the risk/reward will be too tilted toward risk. In keeper leagues, though, he should make for a terrific buy-low candidate. He should be a fantasy stud eventually.
heard deron williams might be shut down. in fantasy finals. opponent has dwill...think its worth picking up Gaines?
Tom Carpenter (11:25 AM)
I really don't expect much out of Gaines - I'd rather have MarShon or Green. But if they're gone and there aren't other decent options out there, it can't hurt to nab Gaines so your opponent can't. That's just smart fantasy hoops.
Anthony Davis... Top ___ player in 2013?
Tom Carpenter (11:29 AM)
Great question, Drew. Obviously, there are a lot of factors that will be filled in before next season begins that will affect his ability to perform. Which team drafts him is the most important element. If it's the Bobs, he'll clearly have a wide open chance to play huge minutes, but that comes with the downside of added pressure to score, which is his weakness. Assuming he lands some place where his coach gives him all the touches he can handle, I'll be looking at him by the fifth round or so. He should be a capable rebounder and shotblocker right out of the gate.
Kyle (Lock Haven PA)
Where could you see Alec Burks going next year?
Tom Carpenter (11:33 AM)
Unless the Jazz tweak their lineup enough that he moves from barely in the rotation into a full sixth-man or starting role, I don't see much value in Burks next season. He's worth keeping an eye on, but that's about it.
tony (warrington, bucks count)
comments on the Pens tactics in game 6.
Tom Carpenter (11:34 AM)
Um, how are the Pens going to get to Game 6? Looks like they quit playing hockey in Game 3. Hey, wait, this isn't a hoops question ... GO WINGS! ;)
whats the deal with luke walton and how can he stay on laker payroll and he NEVER plays
Tom Carpenter (11:36 AM)
He must be a hell of a good practice player. Guys like that have value to teams, because they create good comp during practice. Too bad there's no fantasy stat for that.
Ray Allen (Bench)
With 5 Boston games left to go, wouldn't my owners be better off dropping me and picking up Marshon Brooks, even though he only has 4 games left? (Semi-deep league)
Tom Carpenter (11:39 AM)
It's a safer move than rolling with Allen and his bum ankle, though he's supposed to play tonight. Odds are that Ray-Ray will take a seat on the pine for at least one of their remaining five.
Who would benefit more next year if the Knicks traded Melo, Lin or Amare?
Tom Carpenter (11:41 AM)
For the record, I'd be floored if they dealt him, but stranger things have happened. If Melo is dealt, I'd expect Amar'e to benefit the most because he'd get his field-goal attempts back and resume his studly fantasy ways as a big-time scorer. It's going to be nearly impossible for both Amar'e and Melo to maintain their high-scoring ways together.
Andy (St. Louis)
Are Dragic or Vasquez keeper worthy for next year or will they lose their starting jobs again? Thanks
Tom Carpenter (11:44 AM)
They should lose their starting jobs and return to limited fantasy roles. However, both the Rockets and Hornets have rosters that could easily change dramatically. I like Dragic better than Vasquez, but Vasquez probably has a better angle at bigger minutes. There really is no simple answer on this question until we see how the offseason goes for roster changes.
I've surprised even myself this year with how many injuries my roster took this season and still making it to Finals. does Kyrie come back, and if so, is it worth it?
Tom Carpenter (11:46 AM)
I didn't think he would, but recent reports make it sound like he'll probably be back for at least a couple of games. I would hold onto him to see what he does in the first game back if he does play. However, if you're in a tight battle and there's a solid waiver play, dump him and move on. Right now it's all about immediate statistical success to take you to the title.
Where should Jeremy Lin be drafted next year if he's at full strength?
Tom Carpenter (11:52 AM)
I imagine he will be drafted higher than he should be in most leagues based off of last season's Linsanity. But we will have to consider that the coach that brought that about (D'Antoni) is gone and the interim coach had great success feeding Carmelo the ball in iso situations, which if continued next season would limit Lin's effectiveness in producing dimes. Assuming the coach and roster stay the same and all parties are healthy, he probably should go in the middle rounds, like 7-8.
What's your take on Jamal Crawford? Is he starting the rest of the way? Should we expect big minutes for him and the big amount of shots to go with that?
Tom Carpenter (11:55 AM)
The beauty of Crawford right now is that he doesn't need to start to get big minutes and a lot of shots. With at least one day of rest between his remaining four games, I expect him to play each of them and likely continue his stat-stuffing ways.
Derrick Williams? wait on him? just as I was about to drop him again he gets a double double
Tom Carpenter (11:58 AM)
After tonight, the Wolves play just three more games -- one more this week and two next. Since his production is so up and down, and due to his light schedule, I would move on and look for help elsewhere.
Tom Carpenter (12:00 PM)
Well that's all for this season's fantasy hoops chat. It's been a real pleasure rapping with you all each week, and I look forward to do this again next season. Good luck to everyone in your fantasy hoops leagues during the final week!
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